December 2013 Newsletter

 

Happy December. Things on the trap line have surely been busy so far. As I write this the larger streams are still pretty much ice free, not like the smaller ones which are ice choked. Snow amounts vary around the state but around here a couple of inches are all you can find. This has made land trapping a lot easier for most of us.

The amount of fur being brought in has far exceeded what my old butt can keep up with. My freezer is full and no matter how hard I try I am still not near the bottom. Thanks to my friend Sid I am gaining but until further notice I will only be accepting muskrats, mink and beaver in the round. All other animals must be finished.

Also effective immediately any fur brought in to the shop in the grease will be prepared before any payment is made. The reasoning behind this change is due to the fact that it is very hard to tell what condition the fur is in prior to fleshing and stretching. Recently fur was received that looked alright and upon finishing it we found that it possibly had been skinned with a weed whacker. If you bring it in the grease we will bag and tag it and when it is finished I will mail you a check.

An often asked question about fur is “what is it going for this year? Well if you read the reports in Fur –Fish – Game or the Trapper and Predator Caller you will see prices for every animal listed. What you should know is that those are the cream of the crop prices the best and the biggest and the most prime. Now we all wish for those prices, even me, but in reality that does not happen. This is purely a speculative market and I only wish I could rub a crystal ball and see what fur is going to go for this year.  At Arrowhead Trapping I will measure your fur and check for prime-ness and quote you a price. If you are happy with the offer fine, if not you are free to keep it. This applies to finished fur only.

Last year all the buzz was about $16.00 muskrats. A few folks wanted that for their catches only to learn that in the eight grades of muskrats theirs were not near the highest grade. Every animal now has anywhere from six to eight grades which makes it real hard for a county fur buyer. What happened to the old days when it was a small, medium or large?

Being the time of year is for giving thanks I want to thank some folks here. First and foremost my wife Diane for all she does for me. The saying is “behind every good man is a better woman” is a fact here. I can set a good trap line and prepare some good fur but when it comes to book keeping, answering the phone, or doing computer work I do not do so well! Change that, I SUCK!  Add on all the pleasant aromas that accompany a trapper and she proves she is special.

My daughter Crystal thanks for your hard work in keeping our catalogs up to date and all of the other chores you help with. My son Trevor thanks for your help on the trap line and in the shop, and a special thanks for saving my sorry ass from a bottom less beaver pond a month ago.

To all the folks that help me throughout the year, be it at a class, in the shop or wherever I appreciate all you do for me. Last, but not the least thanks to all who patronize my shop throughout the year. There is nothing I like more than to spend an evening in the shop, talking trap talk or rigging traps to catch more fur. Or helping you skin your first catch or just hearing the talk of trap line adventures. We all can learn a lot from all of this.

Time to hit the hay. Fisher and cat sets tomorrow a.m. early. Happy Holidays and dancing chains to all.